Research so far: Mainly the ICC's own site, and I've managed to find live streams of proceedings (goldmine!). Plus my own hazy recollections of Slobodan Milošević's trial, which is probably the closest real-world analogue to my scenario.
The background of the story is a tribunal at the Hague where a recently deposed dictator is on trial for crimes against humanity. The situation back home is somewhat stable—the rebels who overthrew him after a civil war are currently running the country and have restored democracy, but the former regime managed to make such a mess of things that everyone is still struggling to rebuild its institutions, thus the case has been referred to the ICC.
The main character is the prosecutor's star witness, who was present at two of the most well-documented violations (torture of political prisoners and the bombing of civilian targets). It's public knowledge that he was no angel either before the war and he has a criminal record, but this tends to be overlooked because he's now a national hero. What's less well-known is some of the nastier things he did during the war. The defence team's main strategy is to paint him and his movement as terrorists, justifying some of the more heavy-handed measures taken while the dictator was in power.
So, my questions! I'm still in the preliminary phase of planning this thing, so apologies in advance if they're vague.
1) For dramatic impact, the MC and other witnesses would have to travel to the Hague to testify in person (though I understand that strictly speaking, it might not be necessary). Is it likely that a group of them would arrive at the same time, assuming that they shared the same legal counsel, or would they just be showing up on the day or days they needed to testify?
2) Related to the above, where is everyone staying? Do they get put up in a hotel nearby? The MC has an old friend who lives there—can he be wandering around, sans security detail, and staying with his friend when there's a break in proceedings?
3) Would he be allowed to have informal contact with the accused's counsel? As in, if he runs into her accidentally, can they talk or would that look like one or both of them was trying to interfere with the trial?
4) Ultimately, the trial goes pear-shaped, and another character, who is back home and watching the proceedings, decides to take matters into his own hands and assassinate the ex-dictator. His plan is going to fail, but how feasibly close can he get?
Thanks in advance!